June 6th, 2013
Penticton resident David Kerr is among four commissionaires from mainland BC who are being presented with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal at 3pm on 15 June at the Delta Grand Okanagan in Kelowna. The Honourable Steven Point, Lieutenant Governor of BC, will be presenting the medals. The medals honour Canadians who have made a significant contribution to the well being of their community and country. As a not-for-profit organization with a mandate to provide meaningful work to former members of the Canadian Forces and RCMP, Commissionaires was allocated a total of 80 medals by the office of the Governor General of Canada to be awarded to deserving members in their 17 divisions across the country.
David Kerr is Commissionaires’ Site Supervisor for the Penticton Airport where he has worked since 1997. Beyond securing restricted areas both groundside and airside, he oversees all aspects of aviation and passenger safety. He is being awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his continued leadership within, and dedication to, Commissionaires BC. “David is the ideal commissionaire,” says his boss Brian Garvie, Director of Client Services for the Interior. “He is loyal and dedicated to the job, has great leadership skills, and interacts in a very caring manner with the public.”
This is not the first time Kerr is being recognized for his service to community. In 2002, he was recognized as “Man of the Year” in Penticton. In 2007 he was named Canadian Forces “Officer of the Year” by the Air Cadet League of Canada, for service to the Royal Canadian Air Cadet Program.
Soon-to-be Kelowna resident, Commissionaires BC’s CEO, Allen Batchelar, will also be awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal. After a 32 year career in the Canadian Forces and 16 years with Commissionaires, Batchelar plans to retire to Kelowna this September and has recently purchased a home in the area. His leadership and personal commitment to members at the regional and national level have contributed greatly to Commissionaires BC over the many years of his stewardship as CEO. For this, and his long service and dedication to the betterment of Canadian Forces and RCMP veterans, he is being awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.
130 senior leaders of Commissionaires from across the country, plus their companions, are in Kelowna from 11 to 17 June for their Annual Meeting of Directors (AMOD), and Batchelar is responsible for Kelowna being chosen as this year’s location. The annual meeting only happens in mainland BC once every 17 years.
“One of the reasons we chose Kelowna is that the ‘City of Kelowna’ is an important client, and hosting AMOD here is a small way to pay back the community for their loyalty to us for over two decades,” explains Batchelar. “Also the Okanagan is a very unique part of Canada that many of our members have not visited before, so this is an opportunity to introduce this great place to new visitors and we hope they will come back some day.”
Mayor Gray has officially proclaimed June 11 – 17, 2012 as “Commissionaires Week”. The proclamation recognizes the 85th anniversary of Commissionaires BC, their dedication to providing employment to former Canadian Forces and RCMP members, their vital work in Kelowna for more than 25 years, and the fact that they are hosting their annual meeting of directors in the city.
Commissionaires Bob Stephenson from Prince George and Brian Hatch from South Delta will also be awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for their leadership within, and dedication to, Commissionaires BC.
On behalf of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, in this her Diamond Jubilee Year, the Lieutenant Governor presented the medals to these four commissionaires for their ongoing service to Canadians. “I know many of our veterans served our country with distinction before coming to work at Commissionaires,” said the Honourable Steven Point. “Congratulations to those of you who have deservedly received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal today.”
Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medals
A new commemorative medal was created to mark the 2012 celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the Throne as Queen of Canada. The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal is a tangible way for Canada to honour Her Majesty for her service to this country. At the same time, it serves to honour significant contributions and achievements by Canadians. To be eligible for this honour, a person must have made a significant contribution to a particular province, territory, region or community within Canada, or an achievement abroad that brings credit to Canada. To ensure that a variety of fields of activity are recognized, partner organizations were invited to nominate candidates from their community or organization for this national honour. More at www.gg.ca/document.aspx?id=14019&lan=eng.
Commissionaires was founded in Canada in 1925 following the First World War when there was no social safety net for soldiers who, upon completion of their service, found themselves without employment. Commissionaires was created to look after these men and women and provide them with transitional or permanent jobs, primarily in the security field. From 1925 to 1948, Commissionaires expanded all across Canada. Today there are a total of 17 divisions representing all the Canadian provinces and territories. The organization employs over 20,000 men and women across Canada of all ages and from many walks of life, including but not limited to former Canadian Forces and RCMP personnel. Services in BC include: security guarding, enforcement, identification services, training, and security consulting. More at www.commissionaires.ca.
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